• Your Top Questions on Personal Injury Cases Answered, Legalese-Free

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    If you’ve been hurt due to another party’s negligence, then you may need to consider a personal injury lawsuit in order to get compensated and cover your medical bills and associated expenses. But how, exactly, does that work? The legalese used in the tort law system can be confusing if you’re diving into it for the first time. Here are some common FAQs regarding personal injury cases, answered in plain language:

    • What Are the Most Common Causes of Personal Injury Lawsuits?

      Auto accidents are the most common reason people file personal injury lawsuits, accounting for just over half of personal injury cases. Medical malpractice and workplace injury come after that.

    • Do I Need to Hire a Lawyer for a Personal Injury Lawsuit?

      Although it’s not required that you hire a lawyer for your lawsuit, it’s highly recommended. If you’re going through the time and expense of filing a lawsuit, you should do everything you can to get a better outcome. That undoubtedly includes hiring an experienced attorney. Most personal injury attorneys work on what’s called a contingency fee so that their clients can afford them. Under this arrangement, the attorney gets a portion of the settlement if the case is successful.

    • How Much Is My Case Worth, and How Is That Calculated?

      In general, five categories are looked at when settlements or damages in personal injury cases are calculated. They are past medical bills, future medical bills, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and pain and suffering. Some of those are easier to attach a figure to than others; it’s easy to add up all your medical bills so far, but much more difficult to put a price tag on emotional distress. Personal injury liability (whether one party was completely at fault for the events that occurred or whether both parties contributed to the events) also affect personal injury outcomes, and you should remember that although a lawyer should be able to give you a rough estimate in a consultation, even the best law firms can guarantee outcomes.

    • How Long Does It Take to Resolve a Personal Injury Dispute?

      This is another tricky question that no lawyer can answer with 100% certainty. If you settle early on in the process, it may take only a few months before you can resolve the issue and go back to your normal life. But if you’re fighting in court — moreover if either party appeals — then you could be looking at a years-long process.

    • Should I Agree to a Settlement, or Fight in Court?

      This is one of the most hotly debated topics in personal injury cases. If you’re offered a settlement that’s close to the dollar amount you’d seek in court, it’s probably to everyone’s advantage if you accept it. However, you shouldn’t let yourself be bullied into taking a settlement that doesn’t meet your needs.

    What other questions do you have? Join the discussion in the comments.